#12Masque #Flashfiction

Well, this is part of the lovely @charitygirlblog’s #12Masque flash fiction contest that I was invited to.

I haven’t written in a while due to unfortunate working conditions and busyness so I really hope you enjoy this piece and that it is vaguely up to standard for you.

I will obviously write you another life update as soon as I possibly can but until then I hope you enjoy this little piece of fiction that I put together for you. I hope you can guess what tale I based it off and that it at least amuses you for a short while.

Thanks guys.

The Painted Pigeon

Dark eyes and dark mouth that pressed together in gloomy places. The shadows cloaked him. Silver weighted his belt, dipping at his side with a purpose that sunk as heavy as his heart. He would destroy the old man. He would make him pay for this most treacherous of crimes.

Slight and female, the emerald form swept past his hiding place, billowing veils of fabric sliding by her legs in the breeze and motion of her step. The enemy’s advisor.

He withdrew from the passageway. Sharp feet made no noise on the stone stair. Circling ever upward, his nose sought the scent of his prey but it was masked by aviary overlay.

Certain he was alone but still wary; he crouched as if dropping something and sniffed the cold ground. Traces lingered closer to the floor. His stomach growled.

The steps curled like twisted vertebrae, tighter and tighter until they culminated in the old door and the migraine that lay behind. Beyond this door was his nemesis. Beyond this door was sweet revenge.

Saliva pooled in his mouth. It would taste so good to wrap his jaws around the old man’s flesh, rip the hide from his sinewy back.

“You’re making a mistake,” a low whistle warned.

His eyes lifted to the window ledge and found hers. Impossible. The sound of her mystical, winged form would have startled him if she’d flown by. Was she waiting here for him? He bit back a growl, barely straightening the snarl on his teeth. She must have spied him lurking in the shadows.

Vengeance deepened the plum of his words into a fruity roar. “You can’t stop me.” Fist curled around the door handle, fingers taut.

Her trill caught him again. If the noise reached the old man’s ears then revenge would be impossible. Teeth bared, involuntary, as he shifted his head to one side to gauge her.

Layla’s head tilted too. She hopped closer to the edge of the sill. “I’m not here to stop you.”

He took her words to open the door and fell in upon the destruction. The old man laid, crown askew, in bloodied disgrace on the flagstone floor. The curtains tailed in angry tatters. Glass sprinkled stone.

Amidst Layla’s trilling laughter, the prince howled. The motion stretched his spine and tore the clothes upon his back as hair and muscle sprouted. “Take off your human mask,” she laughed in the face of his despair, “and I’ll take off mine!”

Tears of anguish burned the prince’s eyes. Revenge was torn from him and grief burned in its place. His jaws lengthened as tortured yowls escaped, whilst paws stubbed the spread of his quaking palms and fingers.

Still, Layla squawked. “Kill the queen? Ha! ‘Twas me not him! Spurn me for being too plain, will you? Well let’s show everyone your true form and keep you the Beast you’ve always been, my masquerading prince!”

She flew low to his ear.

“’Til humility and love can unmask you once again…”

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10 thoughts on “#12Masque #Flashfiction”

  1. Hurray! I love a twisted fairytale – and this is a great one. You have a wonderful way with language, imagery like this: "the steps curled like twisted vertebrae, tighter and tighter" that foreshadow his later transformation. Just fantastic! So glad you joined!

  2. My favorite line is when Layla hopped closer to the edge of the sill and said "I'm not here to stop you." That was a surprise I wasn't expecting : ) The descriptions in this story are so lush I felt as if I could practically feel the feathers—truly a technicolor tale.

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